Art / Mark O’Connell

‘I was just on the edge of getting married, and I was frenzied at the prospect of this great step in my life after having been a bachelor for so long. And I really wanted to take my mind off of the agony, and so I decided to sit down and write a book.’

ian fleming

It is April 1953.

Britain’s newest monarch is about to be crowned.

Sir Winston Churchill is Prime Minister and Dwight D. Eisenhower is the US President.

Cecil B. DeMille’s The Greatest Show on Earth has just won the Academy Award for Best Picture.

The Stargazers’ ‘Broken Wings’ is the UK number one.

And a new author called Ian Fleming is about to introduce a pop culture phenomenon.

Double O-Seventy years ago on April 13th 1953, publishers Jonathan Cape first published Ian Fleming’s Casino Royale. And he himself designed the cover. It was a quickfire hit and surprised the author’s critics, peers and friends. In the fourteen publications that followed, Ian Fleming forged a new, post-war cultural hero, presented a new jet-set era of confidences, sexuality and intrigue, and also crafted a genre of his own. The spy maker gifted both men and women a fantasy, a template, a diversion, and an escape.

As part of the celebrations this bullet catcher had two missions.

One was to gather all the top Fleming minds, continuation authors, biographers and creatives to herald their best Fleming books, moments, lines and successes for an exclusive for Yahoo Entertainment UK.

I spoke to Ian Fleming Publications’ Corinne Turner and Lucy Fleming, Bond continuation authors Raymond Benson, William Boyd, Jeffrey Deaver, and Kim Sherwood, Young Bond‘s Steve Cole, Bond historians John Cork and Jeremy Black, comic-book artist Giorgio Spalletta, Fleming biographer Andrew Lycett, Fleming actor Mark Burgess, and Bond screenwriter Robert Wade.

JAMES BOND AT 70: 007 writers and experts share their favourite Ian Fleming books and quotes / Yahoo Exclusive / Mark O’Connell

The second was to garner the world’s Bond and Fleming literary fans to determine what are the #TopThreeBonds as part of YOU ONLY LOVE THRICE – TOP THREE BONDS reveals the fan favourite Ian Fleming novels for 70 YEARS OF 007.